Yesterday I went to the Frequency Reading at the Four-faced Liar. I got to hear Jennifer Knox read! Who is a fantastic chica and I’m just completely surprised that I didn’t hear about her earlier. Very funny and odd, just like I like ‘em. And I got to hear Todd Colby again. He had one piece where he repeated “sweet” a lot that reminded me of Gertrude Stein. Hearing him read his stuff definitely adds another dimension to the work. And I was also reminded about the first time I heard him read, at Galapagos in the Burg, right after or right before September 11. And now I’m reading at Galapagos, in 3 weeks. But I’m nowhere near, even in the same ballpark, or same state, or even same country, in terms of poetry quality. I bought Todd’s Tremble and Shine right before I heard him read. The cover is a painting by his wife and is the sort of outline mixed in with negative space with photorealism that I love. I think Martin Mull does something similar. It’s all very psychologically suggestive. The book is a nice, unusual size, smaller than normal, has a good feel to it when you hold it in your hand. Amy Fusselman read as well, something really compelling about art and Gilbert and George and writerly writers versus non-writers.
I also got to meet Shanna Compton, who admitted to reading this blog! And she admitted this in public! She was sweet and not as fierce as her poetry suggests. Also taller than me. All the poets were taller than me. Metaphorically as well as physically.
Sigh. Goddamnit, I’ve been writing poetry for 4 years, and I want some results! I love going to readings, but sometimes it’s a little depressing to see how comfortable other poets are, how fantastic words and images just seem to arrive in their poetry as if plopped by angels, how sure they are in their poetic skin. I feel so far from that.